Scalextric Le Mans 24 Hr.
 

Scalextric is one of the world's oldest slot car manufacturers. Scalextric has been producing 1:32 Scale slot car racing sets for the home and club racer since 1957. Over the years Scalextric has sold enough race sets and expansion track to nearly circle the globe.

In keeping with the times, Scalextric has introduced their largest and most sophisticated race set to date, the Le Mans 24hr. This set includes an electronic lap counter and two Mercedes CLK Le Mans prototype sportscars.

The set comes attractively packaged in a large reusable carton. The lower portion of the box is made of Styrofoam with pockets to cradle all of the various track sections, cars and electrical accessories comprising the set. If you plan to regularly set the track up and then take it back down again the box provides an excellent means of storage.

 
Scalextric Le Mans 24 Hr Race Set - C.1050

 

The Track System

The Le Mans 24hr comes with an excellent assortment of track sections. The set includes enough track to build a large 2-lane layout with lap lengths of just over 30 feet per lane. The set also includes outside turn borders for the two fastest turns on the layout. These borders include integral guard rails that quickly snap into the outside edge of the borders. The diagram below illustrates the standard track layout configuration.

 
Scalextric Le Mans 24hr Race Set (Circuit 4)
 

The cars race in a clockwise direction, with the start/finish line placed along the short straight on the left side of the diagram above. The power supply and hand controls are connected on this shorter straightaway. The electronic lap counter is placed in this short straight as well to facilitate easy viewing by both racers.

Scalextric's track system employs plastic track sections molded in a soft vinyl-like material that stands up nicely to repeated construction and breakdown. This type of track construction is much more resilient than the styrene moldings of some other race sets. The flexibility of the track itself also makes it possible to create raceways permanently mounted on tables with interesting elevation changes.

Scalextric sells a wide variety of additional track sections to create larger and more elaborate raceways. A total of four (4) turn radius sizes are available making it possible to construct either an 8-lane race track or a narrower circuit with a good selection of differing turn sizes.

 

The Cars

The Scalextric Le Mans 24hr. includes two Mercedes CLK Le Mans prototypes as they competed in 1999. These cars include working headlights and taillights. Slot car racers accustomed to Lexan vacuum-formed bodies will marvel at the modeling detail that these cars provide. A sidewinder motor configuration makes it possible to even include a full cockpit and driver.

The cars strike a nice balance between straight-line speed and handling in the corners. The robust construction of these cars allows them to take a fair beating and still keep running. This has actually always been a strong point of Scalextric products. Young children as well as adults can race these cars hard without constant fiddling.

 
Scalextric Mercedes CLK - C.2082
 

The modeling detail that these cars possess rival many die-cast products. And when you're ready to improve their performance a wide assortment of hop-up parts are available both from Scalextric and other third-party sources.

 

Lap Counter

The Scalextric Le Mans 24hr. includes an electronic lap counter. This device can be configured to count from 1 to 99 laps, and will alert the drivers via a small speaker when the race is completed. The winner's lane flashes to show the winning driver.

 
Scalextric Electronic Lap Counter - C.8045
 

The lap counter comes attached to a short section of straight track that can simply be inserted in the layout to form a start/finish line. As cars pass over the lap counter each lap is recorded. The lap counter is powered by a pair of regular AA flashlight cells so no additional track wiring is required for its use.

 

Summary

Scalextric has created an excellent product with their Le Mans 24hr. race set. If you have been thinking about buying a 1:32 scale slot car set this is a great way to get started. The track system is first rate, the cars are fast and well detailed, and the electronics offer a new dimension to home racing.

Scalextric's extensive range of accessories make it possible to expand your raceway and create a much larger layout over time. The wide variety of track sections available will allow you create a race track that fills an entire room or attic.

Scalextric has been producing 1:32 scale racing products for over 40 years. They are the oldest and most respected name in 1:32 scale slot car racing. Some might even argue that they pioneered the 1:32 scale. Their products are available from dealers around the world including the United States.

If you are planning on building a 1:32 scale home track this is definitely the track system to use, and the Le Mans 24hr. set is a great way to get started. To learn more about the Scalextric track system visit their web site at Scalextric-USA.

 

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